Q. 130. What are the sins of superiors?

A.
The sins of superiors are, besides the neglect of the duties required of them,[696] and inordinate seeking of themselves,[697] their own glory,[698] ease, profit, or pleasure;[699] commanding things unlawful,[700] or not in the power of inferiors to perform;[701] counseling,[702] encouraging,[703] or favouring them in that which is evil;[704] dissuading, discouraging, or discountenancing them in that which is good;[705] correcting them unduly;[706] careless exposing, or leaving them to wrong, temptation, and danger;[707] provoking them to wrath;[708] or any way dishonouring themselves, or lessening their authority, by an unjust, indiscreet, rigorous, or remiss behaviour.[709]

[696] Ezekiel 34:2-4. Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel, prophesy, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD unto the shepherds; Woe be to the shepherds of Israel that do feed themselves! should not the shepherds feed the flocks? Ye eat the fat, and ye clothe you with the wool, ye kill them that are fed: but ye feed not the flock. The diseased have ye not strengthened, neither have ye healed that which was sick, neither have ye bound up that which was broken, neither have ye brought again that which was driven away, neither have ye sought that which was lost; but with force and with cruelty have ye ruled them.
[697] Philippians 2:21. For all seek their own, not the things which are Jesus Christ's.
[698] John 5:44. How can ye believe, which receive honour one of another, and seek not the honour that cometh from God only?
John 7:18. He that speaketh of himself seeketh his own glory: but he that seeketh his glory that sent him, the same is true, and no unrighteousness is in him.
[699] Isaiah 56:10-11. His watchmen are blind: they are all ignorant, they are all dumb dogs, they cannot bark; sleeping, lying down, loving to slumber. Yea, they are greedy dogs which can never have enough, and they are shepherds that cannot understand: they all look to their own way, every one for his gain, from his quarter.
Deuteronomy 17:17. Neither shall he multiply wives to himself, that his heart turn not away: neither shall he greatly multiply to himself silver and gold.
[700] Daniel 3:4-6. Then an herald cried aloud, To you it is commanded, O people, nations, and languages, That at what time ye hear the sound of the cornet, flute, harp, sackbut, psaltery, dulcimer, and all kinds of music, ye fall down and worship the golden image that Nebuchadnezzar the king hath set up: And whoso falleth not down and worshippeth shall the same hour be cast into the midst of a burning fiery furnace.
Acts 4:17-18. But that it spread no further among the people, let us straitly threaten them, that they speak henceforth to no man in this name. And they called them, and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus.
[701] Exodus 5:10-18. And the taskmasters of the people went out, and their officers, and they spake to the people, saying, Thus saith Pharaoh, I will not give you straw. Go ye, get you straw where ye can find it: yet not ought of your work shall be diminished. So the people were scattered abroad throughout all the land of Egypt to gather stubble instead of straw. And the taskmasters hasted them, saying, Fulfil your works, your daily tasks, as when there was straw. And the officers of the children of Israel, which Pharaoh's taskmasters had set over them, were beaten, and demanded, Wherefore have ye not fulfilled your task in making brick both yesterday and to day, as heretofore? Then the officers of the children of Israel came and cried unto Pharaoh, saying, Wherefore dealest thou thus with thy servants? There is no straw given unto thy servants, and they say to us, Make brick: and, behold, thy servants are beaten; but the fault is in thine own people. But he said, Ye are idle, ye are idle: therefore ye say, Let us go and do sacrifice to the LORD. Go therefore now, and work; for there shall no straw be given you, yet shall ye deliver the tale of bricks.
Matthew 23:2, 4. Saying, The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat.... For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers.
[702] Matthew 14:8. And she, being before instructed of her mother, said, Give me here John Baptist's head in a charger.
Mark 6:24. And she went forth, and said unto her mother, What shall I ask? And she said, The head of John the Baptist.
[703] 2 Samuel 13:28. Now Absalom had commanded his servants, saying, Mark ye now when Amnon's heart is merry with wine, and when I say unto you, Smite Amnon; then kill him, fear not: have not I commanded you? be courageous, and be valiant.
[704] 1 Samuel 3:13. For I have told him that I will judge his house for ever for the iniquity which he knoweth; because his sons made themselves vile, and he restrained them not.
[705] John 7:46-49. The officers answered, Never man spake like this man. Then answered them the Pharisees, Are ye also deceived? Have any of the rulers or of the Pharisees believed on him? But this people who knoweth not the law are cursed.
Colossians 3:21. Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged.
Exodus 5:17. But he said, Ye are idle, ye are idle: therefore ye say, Let us go and do sacrifice to the LORD.
[706] 1 Peter 2:18-20. Servants, be subject to your masters with all fear; not only to the good and gentle, but also to the froward. For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully. For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God.
Hebrews 12:10. For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness.
Deuteronomy 25:3. Forty stripes he may give him, and not exceed: lest, if he should exceed, and beat him above these with many stripes, then thy brother should seem vile unto thee.
[707] Genesis 38:11, 26. Then said Judah to Tamar his daughter in law, Remain a widow at thy father's house, till Shelah my son be grown: for he said, Lest peradventure he die also, as his brethren did. And Tamar went and dwelt in her father's house.... And Judah acknowledged them, and said, She hath been more righteous than I; because that I gave her not to Shelah my son. And he knew her again no more.
Acts 18:17. Then all the Greeks took Sosthenes, the chief ruler of the synagogue, and beat him before the judgment seat. And Gallio cared for none of those things.
[708] Ephesians 6:4. And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.
[709] Genesis 9:21. And he drank of the wine, and was drunken; and he was uncovered within his tent.